Created By: ODHS
John Lord is generally acknowledged to have developed the first extensive brewing business in Olney. John Lord was presumed to be born in Weston Underwood, date of birth unknown. Records can support that some ‘Lords’ lived in Weston Underwood in the mid eighteenth century. In William Cowper’s time, Samuel Teedon, a friend of the poet and a teacher in Olney, wrote in his diary 'whilst at Weston, Mrs. Lord brought Cowper some roast beef down from the farm'.
John, his family and close relatives owned some seven public houses, The Boot, The Bell, The Sun, The Duke William, The Cock, The Dolphin and (at the south end of the town) The Red Lion. This malting at 104 high Street was the only one (of five) not attached to a public house. It is possible that the Lord family transferred its malting business to the premises in the High Street after they left the Boot Inn c.1840. An old beam in Lord's malting has the date 1 August 1835 carved into it, with the two carpenters' names.
John Lord appears to have been an ambitious brewster. Unfortunately, following his death in 1812, his brewery operations appeared to become fragmented amongst his family. Had the business continued under John, it is possible that it would have expanded further, and as a consequence, it probably would not have been viable for Hipwells to develop their brewery interests in Olney at that time. However, his apparent early death paved the way for them eventually to buy all seven public houses in the 1860s & 70s, and judging by the grand dwellings that the Hipwell’s later built in Olney, there was still a fortune to be made in brewing.
(Read more about John Lord's Brewery Activities as told by a descendant (another) John lord.)
The three storey malting is Grade II listed as early C19 maltings, altered, stone, slate roof, brick stack. The building has been used for several purposes since it ceased being used as a malting, including the manufacture and storage of lampshades . It now used by a business designing bespoke packaging.
.Walk along the street a little further to Brock's Garage.
This point of interest is part of the tour: Olney High Street - Heritage Trail (Version 1)